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[civilwarwest] Re: [antietam] POW Exchanges

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  • Bill Brown
    ... During the course of my research on the Left Wing (Army of Georgia) of Sherman s two armies, I found many more differences between both 14th and 20th Corps
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 22, 2000
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      At 06:25 PM 02/21/2000 -0800, you wrote:
      >Michael;
      > True enough on the 79th Pa and 17th NY, but both were long-time Western
      >Armies units --- unlike those in the XX Corps --- the old Army of the
      >Potomac X1 and XII corps --- which came west after Gettysburg.
      > By 1864, the only thing "Eastern" about them were there state
      >desination. they had been thoroughly "corrupted" by all those Buckeyes,
      >Hoosiers, Suckers, Wolverines, Badgers in everything from fighting tactics
      >to slouch hats and blanket rolls.
      > And that has always been of an interest to me: The Western Armies and
      >the Army of the Potomac were extremely different in many aspect sand that is
      >expecially true in terms on uniforms and accoutrements. How the soldiers
      >dressed in the Union Army dependend on more where they were than where they
      >came from.

      During the course of my research on the Left Wing (Army of Georgia) of
      Sherman's two armies, I found many more differences between both 14th and
      20th Corps than similaries the Army of the Tennessee (15th & 17th AC).

      Both 14th & 20th AC were actually more similar in uniforms and discipline
      (sic) than was previously assumed by reading books such as Glathaar's study
      of Sherman's army (March to the Sea and Beyond). Through the work of
      strong supply system established by General Thomas' staff, 14th Corps were
      nearly more uniformed than their pards in the Army of the Tennessee. In
      addition to reports noting the wide variety of clothing by March 1865, many
      14th AC units were shown with flock coats (of some kind) with standardized
      set of accoutments (sic). With 17th NYZ maintaing their zouave dress in
      the campaign, many NY regiments continued to wear NY jackets and trousers
      (especially those units in 20th AC). In both corps (14th & 20th) there was
      a stronger level discipline on nearly all levels of the command structure.
      This kind of discipline prevented the wide spread abuses that were found in
      the Army of the Tennessee (despite the efforts of Howard and his "eastern
      staff") The level of discpline filters down to how men take care of their
      equipment, filing of reports, and the maintainance of supplies on hand.
      Clearly, the Army of the Tennessee failed at this (just take a look at
      reports of 2nd Div.,15th AC before and after William Hazen was put in charge).

      Lastly, both corps (14th &20th) did not consider Sherman a friend of
      theirs. They knew that the Army of the Tennessee was his "pets."
      Considering how much combat both corps saw during the Atlanta Campaign and
      the Carolinas Campaign, it is no wonder that they thought they were being
      expended to protect his pets. (Please note than Hood's assaults on
      McPherson were not planned by Sherman) A good example would be the
      treatment of Alpheses Williams by Sherman. This proven combat commander
      was replaced by Sherman in March 1865 by one of his favorite officers
      (Joseph Mower...whose other nickname was butcher).

      Sorry for the long answer, but I felt it was necessary to consider more
      evidence on these armies than the generalities advanced by Glathaar and
      others.

      Regards,
      Bill


      "Mix 'em up. I'm tired of States' Rights"
      Major General George H. Thomas, USA,
      26 November 1863

      *******************************
      William H. (Bill) Brown, C.A.
      Governors' Records Archivist
      North Carolina State Archives
      4614 Mail Service Center
      Raleigh, NC 27601-4614
      919-733-3952 (T), 919-733-1354 (F)
      wbrown@...
      *******************************

      "Opinions expressed in this message may not represent the policy of my
      agency."
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